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CMT (TCG)

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CMT
CelebiTriumphant92.jpg
MewtwoEXNextDestinies54.jpg
Celebi Prime and Mewtwo-EX
Types used GrassPsychicColorless
Major cards Mewtwo-EX, Celebi Prime, Tornadus
Era 2012

CMT was a highly successful and popular deck archetype in the Pokémon Trading Card Game during the second half of the 2011-2012 organized play season. It focused on Celebi Prime's Forest Breath Poké-Power for Energy acceleration, combined with Skyarrow Bridge and Switch to switch into an attacker. The deck won multiple State Championships, and several variants performed well at the 2012 U.S. National Championships, including one top four finish in Masters. Stephan Tabaco also piloted the deck to top eight at the 2012 World Championships. Its name is an acronym derived from the deck's three most critical Pokémon: Celebi Prime, Mewtwo-EX, and Tornadus.

Strategy

The deck aimed to open with Celebi Prime. Ideally, the CMT player would be able to attack as early as turn one or turn two with either Tornadus or Mewtwo-EX. This was possible through the Energy acceleration Celebi Prime's Forest Breath provided, combined with Double Colorless Energy to fulfill the Energy requirements for Tornadus's Hurricane or Mewtwo-EX's X-Ball. To get Celebi Prime out of the active position and begin attacking, the deck utilized either Switch or Skyarrow Bridge depending on availability. In the event that the CMT player found him- or herself with a dead hand at some point, Smeargle's Portrait Poké-Power often provided an out. Like Celebi Prime, Smeargle worked well with Switch and Skyarrow Bridge, as the player could often avoid discarding to retreat after a Portrait.

CMT was most potent early in the game. Many other archetypes of its time, such as ZekEels and Quad Terrakion, were incapable of doing much damage the first few turns, so CMT thrived on outspeeding the opponent. After getting a Tornadus or Mewtwo-EX into the active position, the deck focused on taking easy knockouts off the opponent's weak Basics and support Pokémon. Although this of course benefitted CMT by giving it prizes, knocking out Pokémon so early in the game could also slow or even cripple the opponent's setup. Pokémon Catcher was especially helpful in this regard by extending the deck's reach to benched potential threats. Against decks such as ZekEels, CMT aimed to knock out as many Tynamo as possible before they evolved into Eelektrik, thus denying ZekEels its Energy acceleration.

If an opposing deck managed to set up fully, CMT was often far enough ahead that it could win with its few remaining resources. As with many decks, CMT could use N to drop both players' hands should the game become close near the end. The deck played an unusually large number of Supporter cards as well as Smeargle, so it often had a better chance to draw an out than the opposition after a late game N.

Key cards

  • Celebi Prime - Celebi Prime provided the deck's main Energy acceleration via its Forest Breath Poké-Power. If Celebi Prime was active, Forest Breath allowed for the attachment of one Grass Energy card from the player's hand to one of his or her Pokémon, in addition to the typical Energy attachment for the turn. Since Celebi Prime had a retreat cost of  , it could retreat for free with Skyarrow Bridge in play. By attaching one Energy card via Forest Breath and one Energy from the hand, and subsequently retreating or Switching Celebi Prime, CMT could deal as much as 80 damage turn one.
  • Mewtwo-EX - Mewtwo-EX, along with Tornadus, was one of CMT's main attackers. Although it gave up two prizes when knocked out and was vulnerable to an opponent's Mewtwo-EX, its X-Ball attack could be charged with only one Double Colorless Energy and was capable of doing more damage than Hurricane. As the aforementioned ZekEels was a major archetype at the time, Mewtwo-EX was critical to knocking out Tynamo early even without Forest Breath.
  • Tornadus - Variants of CMT existed without Tornadus (generally called CM), but many players opted to run Tornadus both for added power early in the game and as a counter to Quad Terrakion and Mew Prime-based decks. With one Forest Breath and a Double Colorless Energy, Tornadus was able to do 80 damage with Hurricane, 20 damage more than X-Ball was capable of with three Energy attached.
  • Junk Arm - Although Junk Arm's status as a critical card was not unique to CMT (most non-Trainer lock decks of the era played four), it was very important to the deck's success. Many claimed that Junk Arm essentially allowed CMT to play eight Pokémon Catcher. In practice, this was rare, since the player typically found him- or herself expending some Junk Arms to retrieve other useful Trainer cards from the discard. Still, Junk Arm was versatile and powerful.
  • Pokémon Catcher - If an opponent managed to set up quickly, CMT was usually in a bad position; attackers such as Zekrom outmatched it in terms of raw power. However, without support Pokémon for Energy acceleration and other non-attacking effects, other archetypes typically fell under CMT's onslaught. Pokémon Catcher was critical in this regard, by allowing the deck to knock out benched support Pokémon and their respective Basics.
  • Dual Ball - With some slower decks using Pokémon Collector, a Supporter card, to search for Basic Pokémon, CMT's need for speed demanded a faster, though less consistent, method. Dual Ball had a 75% chance of retrieving at least one Basic Pokémon from the deck, a valuable effect given that CMT played only Basic Pokémon.
  • Switch - Since the deck aimed to attach Energy via Celebi Prime's Forest Breath, and Forest Breath only worked while Celebi Prime was active, Switch gave CMT the option to change into an attacker without discarding Energy to retreat. This way, the player could focus on attaching energies to attackers without wasting them on Celebi Prime.
  • Skyarrow Bridge - Skyarrow Bridge served essentially the same function as Switch. Celebi Prime only had a retreat cost of  , so Skyarrow Bridge allowed it to retreat for free as long as it remained in play. Although it was usable throughout the game, Skyarrow Bridge lacked the versatility of Switch. Mewtwo-EX and Regigigas-EX still had to discard Energy to retreat with Skyarrow Bridge in play, whereas they could be Switched for no cost. Also, Skyarrow Bridge's effect was only useful once per turn, while if a player had multiple Switch in hand, he or she could use all of them.
  • Double Colorless Energy - Mewtwo-EX's X-Ball, Tornadus's Hurricane, and both of Regigigas-EX's attacks could be powered either partially or fully by the ColorlessColorless that Double Colorless Energy provided. It also made it easier for Mewtwo-EX to return a knockout against an opposing Mewtwo-EX, in a dynamic known in the TCG community as a Mewtwo war. If the opponent had just taken a knockout with X-Ball, the CMT player could play down a Mewtwo-EX, attach Double Colorless Energy, and (sometimes requiring a PlusPower) knock it out that turn.

Typical decklist

The deck list appearing below is not official, and being that this is merely an archetype, a player may wish to change any part of this deck when building his or her own version. The list shown assumes a HeartGold & SoulSilver through Next Destinies format. Potential later additions are listed in the Possible tech cards section.

Quantity Card Type Rarity
Celebi Prime Grass SuperRare Holo
Mewtwo-EX Psychic Rare Holo ex
Tornadus Colorless Rare Holo
Regigigas-EX Colorless Rare Holo ex
Smeargle Colorless Rare Holo
Professor Oak's New Theory Su Uncommon
Professor Juniper Su Uncommon
N Su Uncommon
Junk Arm T Uncommon
Pokémon Catcher T Uncommon
Dual Ball T Uncommon
Switch T Uncommon
PlusPower T Uncommon
Pokégear 3.0 T Uncommon
Skyarrow Bridge St Uncommon
Double Colorless Energy Colorless E Uncommon
10× Grass Energy Grass E

Possible tech cards

  • Terrakion - After the release of the Dark Explorers expansion in May 2012, CMT needed a way to deal with Darkrai-EX. Darkrai-EX resisted Mewtwo-EX and was capable of knocking out any Pokémon in the deck in two attacks. As its Night Spear attack also hit a benched Pokémon for 30 damage (in addition to the 90 it dealt to the Defending Pokémon), Darkrai-EX could knock out a benched Celebi Prime in two attacks. Although the addition of Terrakion, along with Fighting Energy to power its attacks, somewhat decreased CMT's consistency, it greatly improved the deck's matchup against Darkrai/Terrakion, DMT, and other Darkrai-EX-based archetypes.
  • Tornadus-EX - Tornadus-EX effectively took the place of Tornadus from Emerging Powers upon the release of the Dark Explorers. Builds utilizing Tornadus-EX tended to run a higher count of Skyarrow Bridge than those that did not. Although Tornadus-EX was a two-prize liability against ZekEels and other Lightning-type decks, it was more powerful than the Emerging Powers Tornadus and gave CMT an enhanced ability to donk.
  • Random Receiver - Random Receiver was used to increase consistency and make the deck less susceptible to a late-game N. If the player had already used Random Receiver, it was searchable through Junk Arm, meaning an N'd player needed only to draw a Junk Arm or a Supporter as an out.
  • Shaymin - Shaymin was a common inclusion in CMT. When Shaymin was played from the hand, its Celebration Wind Poké-Power allowed the player to move Energy cards freely between his or her Pokémon. This made it possible to conserve Energies by removing them from a damaged Pokémon, and to catch the opponent off-guard by powering up an attacker that could not normally be powered up in one turn. Since Mewtwo-EX's X-Ball did damage partially based on the number of Energy attached to it, a player could also attack for a large amount of damage suddenly with Mewtwo-EX by Celebration Winding a lot of Energy to it.
  • Shaymin-EX - The possibility of starting with Shaymin-EX made it a little-used tech. However, it was a viable inclusion in the deck because its Revenge Blast attack could be powered up in one turn via Forest Breath and one other attachment. For GrassColorless, Revenge Blast dealt 30 damage plus 30 more damage for each prize the opponent had taken. This provided a powerful endgame attack, particularly against EX-centric decks. If the opponent had one prize left, Revenge Blast did 180 damage, enough to knock out any Pokémon. Shaymin-EX was held in check by its fragile 110HP.
  • Super Scoop Up - Super Scoop Up was used as an occasional alternative to Switch. Although it required a coin flip to be successful, it could pick up damaged attackers as well as removing an unwanted Pokémon from the active position.
  • Energy Exchanger - As Double Colorless Energy was so critical to the deck's strategy, Energy Exchanger was used as an occasional means of searching it out of the CMT player's deck.
  • Virizion - Virizion was used primarily as a tech option against Quad Terrakion. Although CMT tended to have a somewhat favorable matchup against Quad Terrakion to begin with, the inclusion of Virizion turned it into a virtual autowin. For three Energy, Virizion's Sacred Sword did 100 damage. However, against a 2× weak Defending Pokémon such as Terrakion, this turned into a whopping 200 damage. Since Quad Terrakion focused on keeping a single Terrakion alive for a long time before moving to another, Virizion's ability to knock them out in one attack was devastating.